A Look At The Career Of Ice Cube (Or How To Expand Without Alienating Your Core Audience)


Ice Cube And Family.

Ice Cube started out as a member of the gangster rap group NWA.

Cube was the first to leave the group to go solo.

His first record, AmeriKKKa's Most Wanted was released in 1990 and went gold in 10 days with no radio airplay.

He used his new found solo fame to start working behind the scenes.

He directed this video which went to #2 on the pop charts.

His first acting role was in the critically acclaimed movie Boyz In The Hood.

Cube's album  Death Certificate (1991) was considered racist and homophobic.

His next album, The Predator (1992) was his most popular album ever.

He then writes and produces the movie Friday, which  becomes a cult classic.

He pursued and got a role in the movie Three Kings (1999).

Here's a list of Ice Cube's behind the scenes movie credits:

  • Friday (1995) Executive Producer
  • Dangerous Ground (1997) Executive Producer
  • The Players Club (1998) Director
  • Next Friday (2000) Producer
  • All About The Benjamins (2002) Producer
  • Friday After Next (2002) Producer
  • Barbershop 2: Back In Business (2005) Executive Producer
  • Barbershop (2004) Executive Producer
  • Are We There Yet? (2005) Producer
  • Beauty Shop (2005) Executive Producer
  • Black. White. (2006) Executive Producer
  • In his movie career, he has not produced or directed a movie which lost money.

    He is releasing a new album next month. Below is the lead single.

    [reloaded:In case anyone is really paying attention, I changed the title of this post and fixed errors in the movie timeline after reading about the mistakes in the comments.]

    Explore posts in the same categories: A Look, movies, music

    16 Comments on “A Look At The Career Of Ice Cube (Or How To Expand Without Alienating Your Core Audience)”

    1. Loren Says:

      How about expanding without alienating the core. That’s his true genuis. He got whitey to stop being afraid, without losing the core.

    2. chartreuse Says:

      You’re right. I think I’ll change the title…

    3. Brian Says:

      Ice Cube is the man. And yet all that he’s done in the film industry since, he should have earned an Oscar (along with the rest of NWA) right at the beginning. NWA was a fantastic performance troupe of artsy middle-class black guys pretending to be gangstas.

    4. Loren Says:

      They were real good actors then. They had all of white America wetting their khakis.

    5. VampireFeet Says:

      It’s quite amazing that he has been around for over 20 years with his ‘Nigga ya Love to hate’ persona. The key to his success has not been his music nor his acting. It has been his choice to produce his own material when no one else would. He put his money where his mouth was on Friday and then used that huge success to make more movies.

      Isn’t he one of Farakahn’s diciples? I heard that once. If it’s true it makes his success even more amazing.

    6. Scrivs Says:

      You have to be a genius if you can produce Barbershop in 2005 and then go back in time and produce Barbershop 2 in 2004. He probably makes a million mistakes, but just goes back in time and fixes them.

    7. chartreuse Says:

      funny scrivs.


      thanks for sharing…don’t you have some blog network to sell?

      Leave Ice Cube’s movie career to us Time Machine professionals…:)

    8. Anthony Says:

      I thought Ice Cube was married to a porn star? She doesn’t look very porn.

    9. Anthony Says:

      Sorry that was Ice-T and his porn star wife Coco.

    10. rafi Says:

      “NWA was a fantastic performance troupe of artsy middle-class black guys pretending to be gangstas.”

      A little bit overboard, though Dre and Cube were definitely in no way gangstas. But Easy E was a prominent drug dealer and it was his dirty scrilla that financed their independent record release.

      Cube was always open about not gang-banging (after getting asked what set he was claiming… “I don’t bang, I rock the good rhymes”). He still penned many songs from a gangsta’s perspective back in an era that wasn’t driven mad by “keep it real” stupidity, when rap fans knew lyrics could be read as something other than autobiography. It doesn’t matter after all if Cube was from the ghetto, if “every brother with a color is most wanted”.

      It’s interesting Char that you don’t mention his musical decline here. When he went solo he was an unstoppable force and probably the most complete lyricist in hip-hop for three classic albums. Cube could drop knowledge, sing a lament, crack you up or scare the shit out of you from one expertly crafted song to the next.

      The title of this post mentions not alienating your core, but the core within the core being hardcore rap fans overwhelmingly agree that he fell off into irrelevance around the same time his Hollywood career took off.

      Those who loved Ice Cube best in the early 90s felt at least a little burned when he started putting out garbage (everything he’s done on record since Friday). All of the sudden Mr. “I’ll never dance for you” just wanted you to “put your ass into it”.

      Honestly, there’s no way he could have made the leap he made to a mainstream Hollywood player without softening the edges that made him a compelling rapper. More importantly he basically fell in love with a new medium and didn’t seem as interested in his music.

      I’m one of those devil crackers who misses the old Cube perhaps even with a certain sense of nostalgia for those turbulent days gone by. But I don’t begrudge the man for his growth, I just think the world clearly lost a great mc along the way.

    11. chartreuse Says:

      Did you listen to his new track.
      It’s hardcore.

    12. rafi Says:

      I have heard some tracks that leaked last month and it does sound like at least somewhat of a return to form. I’ll give the new album a chance. I want to be a believer…

    13. Brian Says:

      I’m actually surprised that Cube’s new single is as raw as it is. It’s hard to reconcile his relatively squeaky-clean image with the sentiments in the song.

      I like it.

    14. chartreuse Says:

      So do I.
      It’s what made me write this post…

    15. 777 Says:

      Hollywood !!!

      Hollywood movies are generally meant for white people …. the movie industry was never meant for Latinos & Blacks nor Asians or any mixed race people and the funny thing about this is that the Jews helped support the racism in the film industry!!!

      The film industry in Hollywood only sees white people……. until you have more ethnic movie producers…. that is what Hollywood will always be a Racist Haven for White Film and TV producers.

      You have a few good Latino and Asian, Black actors in Hollywood. and hundreds that you don’t ever see…. but Hollywood has pretty much filled there quota on Latino and Black, Asian actors and actresses ……no matter what they tell you or try to sell you…your eyes don’t lie and neither does the camera…but white people do every day in this industry and they don’t have to change there racist ways because they have the industry in the palm of there hands just like anything else in this country.

      “Hollywood and the Movie and TV Industry belongs to “White People” and was never meant for anyone else….just like the clothes for “Tommy Hilfiger”…where never meant for “Blacks to Wear”

      People of all ethnic backgrounds in this country are brain and whitewashed and the actors and actresses are too… they don’t see the big picture!!!…the big picture is that the movie and TV Shows were meant to advertise White Men and White Women!!! and to glorify there image all over the world…and this is an inside thing…. something you will not read in a book or find anywhere else ….why do you think that most of all the casting calls are mainly cast by race and ethnicity?

      Well …..take a strong look at how all the movies are being created to today when they have beautiful Latino or Black and Asian women in movies and TV and very few at that.. who are they coupled up with?….well lets see?…hum.. Ok “White Men” you will very rarely see it the other way around. The Movie and TV glorify White Men as the bread winners voted the worlds Sexiest and the Wittiest and Romantic Adventuress, Responsible and Caring.

      And when they show a Latin and Black guy or Asian guys on TV ….well lets see?…he is Funny, Comical….A bad guy or a thug and just a Karate fighter and also as your Traditional Side Kick!!!.

      If you think That … I am full of crap and negative for stating all this… you just turn on your TV or just go to the movies and you tell me what you see….remember your eye’s don’t lie neither does the camera !!!

      A solution to all this above? quit supporting there ratings and there movies and rental movies and just get regular basic cable and save your money instead of making these people “Become Richer” who don’t want to see you on the TV succeed … and when you hit white people in there pockets then you will see a change …see Asians and Latinos and African Americans and all other ethnic races of people you have the power …it is at your finger tips to a remote to your TV set you can make a difference.

      If you don’t …it will get worse!!! Don’t Support there Ratings or Films “Hollywood Will Go Broke!!!”

      Send this letter to Everybody you know and don’t know!!! Send it all over the world!!!


    16. J89 Says:

      A year later and I agree completely 777, just look at this new Disney cartoon coming out…The Frog Princess, they have black women all excited about having a black princess finally in a Disney movie. However, guess what…her “prince” is white.
      They didn’t need a white prince in Mulan or Aladdin to go along with the ehtnic princesses, but in this movie they do. God forbid they portray a black loving couple, no the villain is a black witch-doctor no doubt and her hero is some European prince…what sort of message is that to little black girls who will want to emulate this?

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